I was actually thankful that it was blowing like a hurricane at San Luis Reservoir or I wouldn’t have had the day to catch up with the winemaking. I did the second racking of the the 20 gallons of Zin today and tasted it. It coming along nicely! The wine is clear and it tastes great. A bit fruitier than other Zins I’ve tasted but the consensus around the house is that it is good. I wonder if that hedge of Sage growing on the top tier actually imparts any taste to the grapes? After racking, I noticed very little residue at the bottom of the carboy which is probably a good sign. I’m taking a 100ml sample to Fermentation Solutions in Los Gatos to check Ph and let me know how much sulfate I might need to add. Also, its time to inquire about bottling. Eric sais there is no real rule about when to bottle other than when it tastes good. I think I will let it soak in some more oak for a couple months before I bottle. I’m thinking 20 gallons is 100 bottles of wine or about 8 cases (12 bottles per case).
This years crop of grapes looks great. The seedless grapes are much more robust this year than last years. The two clipping the Pervis gave me are surviving but not thriving. They may take a couple years to really get going. I had one plant just die on my this year. I guess I shocked it when I pruned it last winter. It is amazing how much grapes are already forming. We have 4-5 months to go before harvest. I wonder If more grapes will form. I pulled the runners and hooked them on the upper wires. I aggressively pruned back the tall runners and the ground runners. I had to prune off some of the grapes that were actually growing on the ground. It’s hard to cut those off when last year I was so desperate to keep every last grape that started. I was told this year to prune out some of the clusters and work at exposing the grapes to the sun–cut anything that is higher than the upper wire and don’t allow the fruit to be shaded even if it means pulling leaves off the vine around the grapes.